The Productsup product-to-consumer (P2C) platform processes over two trillion products a month, empowering long-term business success as the only global, strategic, scalable platform managing all product-to-consumer information value chains across any platform, any channel, any technology.
When Productsup SVP of Engineering, Roland Fiala, first heard about Swarmia in late 2020, he was leading an organization of 20 software engineers split across a few teams. As the company grew, the Productsup engineering organization decided to transition from Kanban to Scrum to create more structure.
And to make the engineering organization's work visible to the business, Roland started to report on three key metrics:
- Lead time for features
- Bug fix time
- The ratio of fixed bugs vs. new bugs
Roland also recognized that hiring, promoting, and training new team leads was going to be one of the biggest challenges he would have to solve in the near future.
The solution: enabling team leads to run better retrospectives and proactively remove blockers
When Roland and his team started looking into different solutions, they wanted to find a tool that would help them report on key performance metrics, provide an overview of what's going on in the department, and enable team leads to proactively identify and remove blockers.
After comparing LinearB and Swarmia, Roland and his team came to the conclusion that Swarmia was better suited for their needs. The Productsup team was particularly excited about Swarmia's approach to continuous improvement through the use of self-configurable working agreements.
And when Carsten Neuendorf, Director of Engineering, joined Productsup in April 2021, he started supporting team retrospectives and weekly check-ins using insights from Swarmia.
Overall, Roland and Carsten have been slowly rolling out Swarmia across the engineering organization. In addition to the product itself, Roland and Carsten praise the close partnership and the Swarmia team's openness to receiving and actioning product feedback and feature requests.
The results: 69% decrease in cycle time and 38% decrease in review time
With the help of Swarmia, Carsten's team was able to cut down cycle time by 69% and increase throughput by 51% within four weeks.
Even more than the impressive numbers, Carsten appreciates the sense of ownership and autonomy that working agreements have brought to his team.
On the other hand, Roland points out that exceptions in working agreements provide a great opportunity for engineering managers to help unblock issues. When a manager notices an exception, such as a stale pull request, they're able to check in with team members and start important conversations that can improve product quality and collaboration within the team.
Ultimately, Roland believes that Swarmia has helped him gain the transparency and visibility he was after.